Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo is the ultimate dump and start, one pot dish! The pasta is cooked right in made from scratch Alfredo Sauce making it flavor packed! The chicken is perfectly cooked, EVERY time! This is so easy, even someone using their pot for the first time will excel!
Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta
It’s about time I get this post written! I’ve been meaning to get it written for literally the past year.. So many recipes, so little time!
One of the most popular recipes on my website is my Instant Pot Dump and Start Alfredo Recipe. Aaaand the most popular question is ‘How can I add chicken to this?’. So today, friends of the internet, you get the answer, and you don’t even have to read through the hundreds of comments on the original post to find it. 😉
Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo, is sincerely one of the easiest recipes you can make in the Instant Pot. No prep, just open things and dump. A little stirring at the end and chopping the chicken is all that is required.
Chicken Alfredo Instant Pot Ingredients
You’ll only need a hand full of ingredients to make delicious, better-than-the-restaurant, Chicken Alfredo. I will go through the most frequent substitutions questions a little further down.
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 tsp minced garlic, dried (can substitute 4 fresh cloves, minced)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 8 oz (or 1/2 package) linguine pasta
- 4-6 frozen chicken tenderloins
- 3/4-1 cup shredded parmesan cheese (in the refrigerator section, not the powdered Parmesan in the green can
- fresh parsley to garnish, if desired
How to make Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo
To make the Chicken Alfredo, it is as simple as throwing the ingredients into the Instant Pot or pressure cooker. It is very important to follow the order of the ingredients and the directions exactly for guaranteed success.
- First, pour the chicken broth, heavy cream, garlic, salt and pepper into the Instant Pot.
- Next, place the pasta into the liquid. The liquid should cover the top of the pasta, you can move the pasta around a bit if needed (if it isn’t covered with liquid, it won’t cook!) but do not stir!! Stirring will settle the pasta at the bottom of the pot, which we don’t want.
- Next, place the frozen chicken tenderloins on top of the pasta. You can season them with salt and pepper, if desired.
- Now, pressure cook on high pressure for 6 minutes with a 6 minute natural pressure release before turning the knob to release the remaining pressure. As shown in the photo below, it will be VERY liquid. This is totally normal and expected.
- Remove the chicken, and let it rest while we add in the parmesan cheese.
- Slowly add in the parmesan cheese while twirling the pasta with tong’s. The parmesan cheese will help flavor and thicken the sauce.
- After the sauce has thickened, chop the chicken and add it back into the pot along with some fresh parsley, if desired.
Substituting the Pasta
One of the most frequent questions I get on the original Alfredo post is about substituting pasta. The key here, because we are adding chicken and the chicken requires the cook time to stay the same, is to substitute the linguine for another hearty pasta that requires the same cook time (6 min high pressure with a 6 minute natural pressure release).
Pasta’s that can be substituted for the linguine are penne, ziti and rotini.
Chicken Alfredo Recipe Instant Pot Variations
Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo with Evaporated Milk
Another frequent question I receive is ‘what can I substitute for the heavy cream?’. The answer is evaporated milk BUT, you need to cook it with a slightly different method. If evaporated milk is added before pressure cooking, it runs the risk of curdling. Heavy cream has enough fat to stabilize it under pressure, which is why it is okay to add it before pressure cooking.
If you want to substitute evaporated milk, follow the recipe for my Skinny Alfredo and add frozen chicken tenders on top of the pasta.
Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo with Broccoli
A lot of people like to serve broccoli with their Chicken Alfredo. I am one of those people, too! Unfortunately, there isn’t a good way to cook the broccoli in the pot at the same time as the pasta and chicken. The broccoli would be totally disintegrated by the time 6 minutes on high pressure was over (for reference, broccoli usually cooks for 0 minutes!).
I suggest either steaming your broccoli in the microwave or roasting your broccoli in the oven while your Instant Pot does it’s thang with the pasta and chicken. I prefer to roast it in the oven, that is my favorite!
Can I use Chicken Breasts instead? My Tenders are not frozen?
Let’s talk chicken. I suggest using frozen tenderloins because you will get consistent results every time. Tenderloins are generally the same shape and size, which is why we can assign it a set cook time with no issues.
Chicken breasts are not the same way. They just are never the same size, thickness etc which makes it really difficult to write a recipe that will be successful every single time.
If you only have chicken breasts, I would suggest thawing them and then cutting them in half, so they are about 3 inches wide.
If your tenders are not frozen, they won’t need to cook as long as the recipe calls for. In this case, I would recommend changing the pasta to either medium shells, macaroni, or pasta salad noodles and adjust the cook time to 3 minutes high pressure with a 6 minute natural pressure release.
Serving Instant Pot Alfredo Chicken
Make sure to let your chickens Alfredo sit in the Instant Pot for a few minutes prior to serving- this will both let the meal cool a bit and will help thicken the sauce.
I always serve chicken Alfredo with a side of garlic bread or French bread (link to French bread) and a crunchy lettuce salad. If you are like my husband, you may like adding in some crispy bacon bits to your chicken Alfredo to take it up a notch!
Store your leftover chicken Alfredo in the fridge in an airtight container. When you go to reheat the dish, I recommend reheating on the stove top with a splash or two of milk. Your pasta will soak up a lot of the sauce so adding the milk will help that problem.
If reheating in the microwave, after everything is warmed through, add a splash of milk and stir to bring the sauce back together.
Freezing Chicken Alfredo
You can freeze chicken Alfredo, if you’d like. I would suggest freezing it in the dish (or a one time use pan) you plan on baking it in. Make sure the pasta is covered in foil.
When you are ready to use the frozen chicken Alfredo, bake with the foil still on at 350° for 1-1 1/2 hours or until hot all the way through.
Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo Recipe FAQs
Heavy cream is what you will want to use. Milk will curdle while cooking the Alfredo Sauce.
Classically fettuccine is used with Alfredo Sauce but use whatever pasta you like the best. When making this in the Instant Pot, I recommend linguine, penne, or ziti.
While a lot of people use the terms interchangeably, they are not the same thing. Alfredo is a Italian cheese sauce while white sauce is a French sauce made with a roux and milk.
Chicken Alfredo always has a white creamy cheese sauce and chicken fettuccine can be made with any kind of sauce.
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More Instant Pot Recipes you will LOVE!
- Chicken Pot Pie
- Chicken and Dumplings
- Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup
- Cauliflower Cheese Soup
- French Dip Sandwiches
- Creamy Salsa Chicken Tacos
- Salisbury Steak Meatballs and Mashed Potatoes
- Dump and Start Creamy Ziti
- Instant Pot Pot Roast
- Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Shells
- Hawaiian Haystacks
- 1 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tsp minced garlic dried
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8 oz linguine pasta*
- 4-6 frozen chicken tenderloins
- 3/4-1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- Add the broth, cream, garlic, salt, pepper and noodles to the Instant Pot in that order. Do not stir, but make sure all noodles are covered. You can move things around a bit, but don't stir.
- Lay the frozen chicken tenderloins on top of the pasta.
- Set your Instant Pot to Manual high pressure for 6 minutes. Allow for a 6 minute natural pressure release before turning the knob to quickly release the pressure.
- Remove the chicken. Let it rest while we finish the sauce.
- Slowly add in the parmesan cheese and twirl the noodles with some tongs. The cheese will thicken the sauce.
- Once the cheese has been added and the sauce has thickened, dice the chicken and add back into the pot.
- It is ready to eat, enjoy!!
Karli Bitner says
Bacon is my favorite add in! So glad you love it!
My family loved this and it was so fast and simple. I added 2 minutes since I had 2 frozen chicken breasts and it was perfect. I steamed 2cups of broccoli and stirred that in with some mozzarella because I had it on hand but this was great before I added them. This is a keeper.
I love this recipe and I’ve made it 3 times over the last month! The first was just that and I followed exactly except used ziti and I added steamed broccoli! Perfection! The second time was for my picky grandchildren and they loved it just as is, against with ziti. Tonight I used rotisserie chicken because I had it in the fridge. I laid it on top and didn’t stir. I added a drained can of peas when I was stirring g in the cheese and added a little shredded mozzarella. It was awesome. Thank you for your recipe. It’s so good and flexible too!
This is great! Just served it to my family and they absolutely LOVED it – even my picky 6-year-old!
I only had whole chicken breasts so I sliced them in half lengthwise. I also used whole wheat fusilli. Cooked 7 minutes instead.
This is my new go-to easy weeknight recipe!
Love this recipe ! Make it for my grand children and my boys love it!